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Toy Biz Batman 1986

Toy Biz Batman Figure were released in 1986, after the huge unexpected success of the Tim Burton Batman movie starring Michael Keaton, Warner Brothers license new toy manufacturer Toy Biz to produce a line of Toy Biz Batman Figure for the movie. 

As a result, and due to time constraints, Toy Biz only released three figures in this line, Batman, the Joker and Bob the Goon. Toy biz also produced two vehicles for this line, the Batmobile and the Batwing.

Although these figures were classified and are often listed as a separate line to the DC Comic Super Heroes were that released at the same time, these figures were actually packed an distributed in the same cases as DC Super Comic Heroes, almost as a subset.

The packaging for these figures was typical of the late 1980’s featuring superb artwork on the front on the left-hand side and the figure in a bubble on the right. The reverse of the cards showcased the other figures in the line, the vehicles and the Batcave playset.

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Toy Biz Batman Figure

The first figure we are looking at today is the Toy Biz Batman Figure. To get these figures into stores as quickly as possible the first Batman figures released were generic in look and the head sculpt had no resemblance to Michael Keaton and had a square jaw. This was later replaced by a head sculpt with a more rounded jaw but still with little resemblance to Keaton. 

Once Toy Biz were given permission to use Michael Keaton’s likeness, the Toy Biz Batman Figure head sculpt was replaced yet again with a “Keaton” head sculpt. In fact, I saw evidence on YouTube of a SECOND Keaton head sculpt meaning there are FOUR variants, rather than the three most sites claim. This fourth version was a slightly more accurate head sculpt with painted eyes and mouth and more muscular arms and hands.

Toy Biz Batman Figure came with a retractable rope with a Bat shaped grappling hook that was attached to his belt and pulled in and out of his waist. The biggest problem with this was that the grappling hook often came loose or fell of the rope, which would the retract back into Batman’s body, never to be seen again!

The Toy Biz Batman figure also came with a Batmarang and a device for shooting the grappling hook, which was only for show and did not work. He also had a removable, cloth cape and a yellow plastic belt. He had articulation on his arms, elbows, hips, and knees with a swivel jointed head.

Batman’s armour and muscle suite was perfectly sculpted and still holds up well against the best today. The paintwork was ok but a bit shoddy in places with some overlapping. The flesh tone, particularly on the third and fourth variants, was very pale, almost anaemic. The sculpting, however, was excellent, particularly for a new company, and some of the best at the time.

MOC

 Square Jaw $20-$25

Round Jaw $20-$25

Keaton Face $30-$60 Av $40

Keaton Mk II $30-$60

 Loose $10-$15

Toy Biz The Joker

The second figure in this line is the Joker, and I am afraid I just about to take everything I said before back, because this Joker figure was one of the most hideous sculpts of all time.

There was absolutely no resemblance, or attempt to resemble, Jack Nicholson. I can only assume they did not have the rights to use his likeness. This figure as a result had little demand and sat on toy store shelves for more nearly a decade!

The only two slightly redeeming points of this figure were the colours, which were very accurate to the cartoon, and the excellent artwork on the packaging. The worst thing about this was the hideous facial expression. Whoever clear this with Toy Biz must have been on drugs at the time, it is just that bad! On top of that his hair looks like a glob of plastic was just dumped on the top of his head and a few lines score through it to represent hair, which it was far from achieving. His ears were also well out of proportion.

As an action feature, he came with a small water tank that fixed to a tube, connected to a lapel flower that when squeezed squirted water. He also had an oversized hat purple hat and an unnecessary walking stick, when a gun or some other weapon would have been more appropriate. The Joker had articulation on his arms (but now elbow articulation), legs, knees, and a swivel head.

MOC $15-$40 Av $25

Loose $4-$10

Toy Biz Bob the Goon

Lastly, we have Bob the Goon, with power kick! Bob came with a hat, a pistol and a dagger and articulation on his shoulders, hips, knees, and a swivel head and wearing a plain black suite. Bob’s action feature was a ‘Power Kick’. 

Lastly, we have Bob the Goon, with power kick! Bob came with a hat, a pistol and a dagger and articulation on his shoulders, hips, knees, and a swivel head and wearing a plain black suite. Bob’s action feature was a ‘Power Kick’.

This feature worked when a lever in his back, his ass. The head sculpt, although not as bad as The Joker’s was not accurate or very well sculpted with little detail. There were two variants of the Joker, with the rarer figure having a Batman hair curl on his forehead and the more common without the curl.

MOC $15-$35 Av $20-$25

 LOOSE $5-$15

Well, that covers the Toy Biz Batman Figure next I'm going to be looking at the Toy Biz Batman Vehicles and the Batcave playset, see below.

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